Spider-Man #1 comic stars in first Morphy and Sparkle City joint auction
Action Comics #1 recently sold for $2.1m, leading Morphy and Sparkle to form a new comic book division
Paul Fraser Collectibles, Sunday 11 December 2011
The recent $2.1 million auction price achieved by Action Comics #1 - the first adventure of Superman, in best-known grade 9.0 quality - made global headlines recently, and the adventures of Batman and Spider-man are hitting the big time too.
Morphy Auctions is among a number of dealers to have noticed that some investors are contemplating a shift of focus from gold and silver to paper.
Thanks to the laws of supply and demand which underpin the collectibles markets, comics are proving themselves as prized and valued assets.
The days when vintage comic books were merely a 'niche' collectible for nostalgic "baby boomers" (people born during the demographic Post-World War II baby boom and who grew up during the period between 1946 and 1964) are long gone.
Today, rare comic books are being increasingly heralded as a potent alternative to stocks and bonds.
In acknowledgement of this, Morphy Auctions has forged an alliance with the specialist company Sparkle City Comics. The latter firm is based in North Bergen, New Jersey, US.
The two firms' alliance came about through a shared love of collecting, when Sparkle's principal, Brian Schutzer, purchased $40,000 worth of comics in a previous Morphy's sale.
Morphy Auctions isn't the only collectibles firm to have branched out into comics.
At Paul Fraser Collectibles, we recently purchased this 72 page comic book whose cover shows boxer Muhammad Ali and Superman fighting in a boxing ring. It wasn't in our stock for very long before it sold to a very lucky buyer.
Sparkle City will provide expert oversight following the launch of Morphy's new Comic Book division.
The result of this alliance will be seen at Morphy's upcoming February 9-11 Toys and Advertising sale. The auction features 200 prized comics from an original-owner collection.
Among the sale's highlights is 1963's The Amazing Spider-Man #1.
Paul Fraser Collectibles recently sold this comic featuring Ali and Superman fighting
According to Morphy, the comic is in 8.5 condition and could bring $25,000-$30,000 when bidders are unleashed upon it.
A 1963 copy of X-Men #1 and Tales of Suspense #39, also from 1963 and featuring the first-ever adventure of Iron Man, will also appear for sale.
"Brian called me after the sale to finalise his purchase, and during our discussion he suggested that we consider building a relationship," Morphy Auctions' CEO Dan Morphy recalled.
"I had been wanting to launch a comic book division in-house, and during that conversation with Brian, it became clear to me that the smartest and most direct path to our goal would be a collaboration with Sparkle City.
"They're an energetic, extremely knowledgeable company with a tremendous database of comic book buyers. It's an exciting combination that could prove very successful, given collectors' insatiable interest in rare comics."
It looks as if collectors' insatiable interest for rare comic books is set to grow and grow in future years. Watch this space for more news from the rare collectible comic book markets.
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Images: Morphy Auctions